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“A Superb Country House with Staff to match!”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Hartwell House

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Hartwell House
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Hartwell
Certificate of Excellence
West Malling, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“A Superb Country House with Staff to match!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 February 2012

My sister and I have just returned from the most wonderful short break which was so much better than we ever could have imagined. Hartwell House is perfect if you want total rest and relaxation and peace - it really can't be faulted. The historic surroundings are magnificent - walking down the sweeping staircases to sit by roaring fires in rooms with high ceilings - it is like being transported back to much gentler calmer times! The house is exceptionally clean - the food in the main dining room was incredible - even for vegetarians - we were offered three alternatives - much better than anywhere else we have stayed where this is made such a big deal of! The staff are the best I have encountered - they are polite and so helpful - nothing was too much trouble for them - our bedrooms were amazing - with big deep old fashioned baths - If you want less formal food then there is a cafe spa for light lunches - if you want to celebrate a special occasion - or want to escape the madness of the world this is the place for you! Other reviewers have said expect a formal tone - I agree that there is a quiet respectful way - but not at all stuffy - the staff make you feel very relaxed and welcome - we were very sorry when we had to come home!

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Pepper11134
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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650 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (156)
Date | Rating
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English first
Tring, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
28 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 February 2012

We have visited Hartwell House several times and have always enjoyed our time there. As you sweep down the drive into view of the hotel it certainly has the 'Wow' factor. This is definitely a more traditional hotel (the history of the building is extremely interesting) and the grounds are lovely.
The bedrooms we have stayed in over the years have always been comfortable and roomy with antiques and antique furniture in place. Although the bathrooms are not in the modern style there are great shower pressures and lots of big fluffy towels and bath robes.
The food at Hartwell is exceptional. The afternoon teas are extremely popular so it's best to book, at least at weekends. The food in the main restaurant has always been outstanding with intense flavours and sauces and wonderful presentation. This is formal dining but the staff are friendly and helpful as well as being extremely efficient. There is an extensive wine list with a wide price range.
The spa doesn't really match the quality of the hotel. As mentioned in other reviews, the ladies changing facilities are not great. The pool is ok and there is a hot tub outside, but we didn't try that so can't comment. However, the steam room although large had what appeared to be rust stains coming down the walls. The jacuzzi didn't have good water pressure jets despite trying to adjust these and the gym room is poorly equipped. The Spa Cafe has a bistro style menu. The food there was ok but not exceptional.
Overall we always enjoy visiting Hartwell House and for us it is a 'special occasion' hotel. By our usual standards it is expensive but we feel it is worth it for the atmosphere, the food and the sense of leaving reality behind as we drive across the bridge into the grounds.

Room Tip: The rooms in the main house are more expensive but obviously more convenient for the restaurant. Ro...
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Mabel58
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
31 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 120 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 January 2012

Hartwell House was perfect for the quick getaway we wanted. For comparison I would highly recommend looking at Lucknam Park near Bath as it offers very similar accommodation with more and nicer amenities.

Tone: Expect a formal atmosphere where everyone is speaking in hushed tones and respecting one anothers privacy while enjoying a truly idyllic setting.

Staff: The staff were faultless.

Accommodation: We stayed in one of the royal four poster rooms (#12) and found it to be very comfortable and well appointed overall. The sofa could use restuffing or replacing as it's fairly saggy and worn. The reception rooms in the main house were large with games to play or magazines to read.

Food: Dinner was very good and of a caliber you would expect. Breakfast could have been better. The scrambled eggs were a bit strange and the buffet selection could have been more varied. The dining room itself seemed a strange choice in a house of this size as it was small and with fairly limited light/views. Food in the cafe was nothing special but was fine.

Pool/Spa: The pool is large and well heated with a depth of 4'6" throughout. There was also a hot tub perched above the pool. The gym equipment was fairly poor but there are free weights and several machines. The changing areas were the biggest downfall. They truly need an upgrade and a rethinking of the space. There is only one toilet in the womens changing room and it's in a repurposed broom cupboard - and you really can tell! They didn't even bother to change the door. The room itself is just a bit tired and awkward. For a hotel of this caliber they really should do better. For spa services I had the pedicure and pregnancy massage from Nadine. She was excellent and I couldn't recommend her more highly. My husband had a full body Swedish massage which he thoroughly enjoyed.

Lucknam park is another excellent choice if you are looking for a country house getaway and they offer a nicer pool, horseback riding and far prettier grounds and gardens. Their restaurant has a Michelin star rating although I found the food to be a bit fussy for the sake of being fussy. If you don't mind going west a bit I would overall recommend Lucknam but for a closer to London option Hartwell House is a perfectly acceptable alternative.

Room Tip: Four poster bed rooms are worth the upgrade. The Hartwell suites located in the converted stables a...
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  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank SaltyDog79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hemel Hempstead, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 January 2012

F A O – James Collard

Dear James

I wish to express my thanks to you for organising the event at the weekend for my wife’s birthday.
The weekend was a tremendous success with not a hitch, even with the hotel having 100% capacity; it did not affect the service, comfort or atmosphere.
My wife and guests thoroughly enjoyed the Hartwell experience.
Please pass on my thanks to all your excellent staff who made us all very welcome.

Kind Regards

Roger Timms
----------------

Room Tip: All our 5 rooms in the house were excellent - 4 with Four posters .My choice would be No 6. If you...
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  • Stayed January 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Roger T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leighton Buzzard, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 January 2012

went here for my 30th birthday, thought i had booked afternoon tea but by accident booked lunch. should have done my homework a bit better and was completely under dressed! i would say ladies in dresses and gents in suits is a must! oh and also if you happen to go and your exhaust is slightly blowing and hasnt been recently valeted! parking assistants! il leave the rest to your imagination! very embarrassed. we were greeted at the door and shown to the drawing room by the butler who brought us drinks and canapes, its an a la carte menu so not much food but very pretty! and at the time the choice of belly pork or smoked wood pigeon, cant say i was watering at the mouth for either but plumped for the pork. It was delicious and all served silver service so definately felt pampered. desert i chose was cheese board and i have to be honest for no other reason than i was absolutely starving! that too was delicious.

the house is beautiful and the grounds seemed lovely but the day we went it rained so not much for us to see sadly.

to sum up, definately dress up! dont go starving because you will probably leave starving and if you are inclined to feel out of place in places where you arent upper class (like me) then give it a skip.

il admit its fantastic, but pricey and i honestly didnt enjoy it( not through any fault of theirs ) but because of my own social standing so to speak.

  • Stayed February 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank claire c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxfordshire, England
Level Contributor
230 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 101 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 January 2012

My wife and I have met up with friends/relatives here about 2/3 times a year for the past 3/4 years and have always found the lunch to be excellent value. We choose the 3 course set lunch with coffee as we like the way the chef dovetails the courses and it saves us having to choose. We went yesterday and had the 'Winter Pimms' seasonal set lunch starting with a glass of winter pimms followed by the set three course lunch including coffee and chocolates all for the magnificent price of £23.50! You can see the menu on the hotel's website. But the price is not the only thing. The food quality is first class, service impeccable and the venue is stunning. We've never been disappointed and we'll be back later in the year.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Tricky49
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Milton Keynes
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 January 2012

James Collard was superb in helping us to organise this special evening in the James Watt
and James Gibbs Rooms. The tables with flowers and candles looked great. Food was
terrific and staff were friendly and helpful; attentive without being obtrusive - just as it should
be. We were able to relax and thoroughly enjoy our event. Our Magician, Paul Megram,
was fantastic as was the Sophie Thurman Jazz Band. Our guests were impressed with their bedrooms and the spa. Everything was special in this beautiful hotel. Do try it for
a weekend break some time.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Chorale
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hartwell House

Property: Hartwell House
Address: Oxford Road, Hartwell HP17 8NR, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Buckinghamshire > Aylesbury Vale > Hartwell
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Hartwell
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — Hartwell House 4*
Number of rooms: 46
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hartwell House is a beautifully restored 17th century Grade 1 listed stately home. The magnificent rooms are superbly furnished with antiques and hung with fine paintings. Many of the exquisitely designed bedrooms and suites are in the house and some in Hartwell Court, the converted coach houses or the Old Rectory. Royal rooms have high ceilings, fine fabrics and dreamy views over the extensive landscape, it is a truly idyllic setting.There are thirty bedrooms and suites on three floors in the main house each aimed at ensuring your comfort and enjoyment during your stay. In addition there are ten suites and six bedrooms in Hartwell Court, the adjacent 18th century indoor riding school. The Old Rectory Hartwell has a superbly appointed master four poster suite with a sitting room and three other bedrooms with bathrooms. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hartwell House Hotel Aylesbury
Hartwell Hotel Aylesbury

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